Smoke Free Partnership submits its contribution to the EU Commission’s public consultation on the revision of the Waste Framework Directive
Thursday, 18 August 2022
Brussels, 16 August 2022: Smoke Free Partnership submits its contribution to the EU Commission’s public consultation on the revision of the Waste Framework Directive (WFD). SFP makes the case for a ban on tobacco filters and a more ambitious liability mechanism for the tobacco industry’s environmental impact and management of the post-consumption waste of its products.
Aside from the already well-known devastating yet preventable health impacts of the tobacco industry, SFP invites policymakers to recognize the industry’s environmental costs, notably in regard to tobacco and novel product waste. The revision of the EU WFD is a key opportunity to address tobacco's environmental burdens on Member States and ensure that the industry’s negative externalities are no more born by communities but by the responsible industry.
The revision of the EU WFD seeks to protect health and the environment through the proper management of waste, plans to tackle hazardous waste, and obeys a waste hierarchy principle that prioritizes waste prevention. The implementation of the polluter pays principle and of the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) are due to be strengthened.
SFP calls for the revised EU WFD to ensure that Member States take action to:
- Apply the polluters pay principle to the tobacco industry and hold it accountable for the costs of environmental harm as well as tobacco product waste mitigation, potentially through taxes, litigation, or other mandatory (non-voluntary) measures;
- Work towards eliminating cigarette filters, a single-use hazardous plastic which is also harmful to human health;
- Strictly regulate EPR schemes applying to the tobacco industry to avoid them becoming a greenwashing opportunity, in accordance with international law;
- Provide more funding to independent research on the environmental harms and costs of the tobacco industry;
- Require that tobacco companies submit the necessary information to fill the existing data gap on the environmental impact of their activities;
- Enhance multi-sectoral collaboration among the health, environment and agriculture Ministries.
SFP and partners’ input to the public consultation on the revised EU WFD can be downloaded here.
About Smoke Free Partnership:
The Smoke Free Partnership is a European coalition of over 50 NGOs that work on EU policy analysis and advocacy, and mobilise decision makers to make tobacco control a political priority. SFP Main partners are the Belgian Foundation Against Cancer, Cancer Research UK, the Comité National contre le Tabagisme, the European Heart Network, the Health Funds for a Smokefree Netherlands, and the Norwegian Cancer Society. SFP is registered on the EU’s Transparency Register under 6403725595-50
Chloé Momas, SFP Policy Officer